The story of India’s first spy master, RN Kao

Editor | Non-fiction
Over half a century after R&AW was founded and seventeen years after Kao’s death, Nitin A. Gokhale puts together the story of the legend that was RNK. Based on reminiscences of family, professional colleagues and juniors, and using his personal papers, this biography is the first definitive account of life and times of RN Kao.
The Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW), India’s foreign intelligence organisation, is one of the most respected institutions in the world of espionage and foreign intelligence today. It has played a vital role in almost all of the land

mark events in India’s recent history—from the 1971 war to the merger of Sikkim, from discovering Pakistan’s nuclear programme to the recent Balakot operation. Yet, as befits its role, very little is known about the organisation.
Equally little is known about its founder, Rameshwar Nath Kao or RNK. An intensely private man, RNK was the classical spymaster who operated in the shadows but built enduring institutions. A ruthless professional who believed in putting national interest above his personal preferences, RNK was also the creator of the secretive Aviation Research Centre, India’s premier technical intelligence agency. His finest hour was the role played by R&AW in the creation of Bangladesh.
About the author:
Nitin A. Gokhale, one of South Asia’s leading Strategic Analysts, is a renowned author, media trainer and founder of a specialised defence related website and Strategic News International ( Gokhale, now a media entrepreneur, has worked across print, web and broadcast mediums since 1983. In the past 36 years, he has reported on India’s North- East, focusing on the different insurgencies there for 23 years, the 1999 Kargil conflict between India and Pakistan and the Sri Lankan Eelam War IV, besides many crucial assignments as a conflict reporting specialist across many countries. Author of six books so far on national security affairs, Gokhale is an alumni of the Asia Pacific Centre for Security Studies, Honolulu, Hawaii. He teaches and lectures at premier Indian defence training institutions like the National Defence College, the Army, Air Force and Naval War Colleges, the College of Defence Management and the Defence

Services Staff College, besides being a popular speaker at various seminars and symposiums on civil military relations, insurgency/terrorism, Asian Security Affairs and military-media relations. His previous books include Securing India, the Modi Way; Rashtriya Rifles: The Home of the Brave; Beyond NJ 9842: The Siachen Saga; 1965 : Turning the Tide: How India won the War; Sri Lanka: From War to Peace and The Hot Brew.

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